How Uncle Sam spends your taxes

After it all gets collected, most taxpayers would like to know where their money gets spent. Here are the many slices of the spending pie.

By Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine

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Apr 18, 2011 2:32PM

Everybody keeps blaming social security and its not social securities fault. Social security was born to help supplement working retirees with approx one third of the income they would need to retire. Now comes medicare, medicade, SSI disbility, dependants etc. Now add to the fact that just as many recieving it ain't paid a dime into the system. Yes I can see why its going to hell in a handbasket. Solution is simple again. Go back and make social security originally what it was intended to do in the first place. That is to provide one third of a persons retirement only if he's worked and paid into the system.

Apr 18, 2011 10:36AM
I would like to see the chart that shows how much administration costs are to these programs, including benefits. How much of every dollar actually gets to SS/Medicare?
Apr 18, 2011 12:29PM
If you didn't pay in to SSI you don't deserve to get anything out of it. Why did congress get a raise the last two years and SSI recipients received nothing ?  Gasoline and grocery prices have increased dramatically and congress says there is no inflation. What planet do they live on ? We got a start last November, lets keep it going until all the self serving politicians in Washington are gone.
Apr 18, 2011 11:11AM
SOCIAL SECURITY IS A SELF FUNDING MANDATE.  It is a trust fund just like any IRA or 401K plan.  SOCIAL SECURITY DOES NOT USE TREASURY TAX FUNDS.    The money in the Social Security Trust Fund belongs to the working class people of America and not the greedy politicians who want to tap into the fund and use it to make their friends and themselves rich(ER).  Social Security takes in more money then it pays out and uses less then 5% of the money for administrative costs.  The Social Security Trust is just like the Civil Service Retirement System (CSRS) and Federal Employees Retirement Systems (FERS) are the retirement trust funds of Federal employees including the Congress, Senate, Supreme Court, and The Oval Office.  How much money does those trust funds spend each year?   Social Security uses 0% that is ZERO percent of general tax funds.  Medicare uses 75% general tax money and is 25% SELF FUNDED.  Please stop putting out false and deceptive information regarding the Social Security Trust fund.  Uncle Sam is not spending  your TAX money when he pays you Social Security Benefits, he is actually giving some of the money back that was taken from you when you were working.       
Apr 18, 2011 12:31PM
If you ask me nobody is paying thier fair share. The corporations get huge tax breaks. The rich  tax avoidance stratagies, the middle class gets tax incentives and the poor pay no tax at all but get the majority of assistance. No wonder the gov is in such sad shape. My solution is simple as I have stated before. Everyone from poor on up to corporate pay a flat 15 percent and none of this right off bs.
Apr 18, 2011 3:28PM
One of the real problems with Social Security is barely mentioned in the article. "the so-called trust fund -- where payroll taxes not needed for current payouts are stashed -- consists of $2.6 trillion in IOUs from the U.S. Treasury. The funds have been borrowed over the past two decades to pay for other federal programs." Our thieving politicians have been raiding the Social Security Trust Fund for a long time to pay for all their other social programs. "Trust" is a concept they've never fully understood.

Call in the IOUs from the US Treasury and fire Timothy Geitner. This, along with a few other minor refinements, should go a long way towards making Social Security solvent again.
Apr 18, 2011 12:33PM
SS and Medicare are paid for by the working Americans no one else. The rest of the programs are give me!!!!
Apr 18, 2011 11:52AM
Dear Lake Erie,

There is no money in the SS trust fund.  It only contains IOUs on the US Treasury.  Lyndon Johnson took the trust fund and rolled it into the the federal buget in the mid 60's to make it look like he balanced the budget.  Politicians have been spending the money ever since.  Had it been left out side the budget, our deficit is much higher than the estimated 1.7 trillion this year.  Things are much worse than they look.

Apr 18, 2011 12:01PM

Stop raiding Social Security period. The gov't is not funding it; just taking from it. A lot of the entitlements for folks who have never put into the fund need to cease! We need to stop giving monies and supplying services to individuals who refuse to follow-up with care.  We have to stop just giving people a check. Talk about waste and abuse. I'm sick and tired of seeing folks diagnosed with a mental illness that refuse to take their medications supplied by taxpayers and have contradictory laws telling them they have a right to REFUSE the very medications that can help them.  Some are unable to differentiate but not all. However,  we continue to supply them  a check!!!  That's insanity. We pay for lawyers and courts that feed off these rights BUT what about the rights of the taxpayer? You either take the medicine or course of treatment (and get better) or you don't get an automatic check from SSD. There are enough folks out there with legitimate mental illness who really need the care and the resources... SCARCE RESOURCES available.

Apr 18, 2011 7:16AM
quit giving our money away and our blood and our lives for people that have been fighting for all time and tell me im a bad person and lazy  i fought for this country i pay for with my body
Apr 18, 2011 12:27PM
These foolish politicians should have some basic business skills going into these positions. And I'm sure they do. Problem is greed and pay backs for getting them there. They are going in with the wrong reasons. Enough of this already.
Apr 18, 2011 9:09AM
One of the best articles I've seen to date.  Good visual display.  Just in case you didn't know... Military retirements are now accrued within the Defense budget by using a percentage of all basic pay.  Not sure when they will use to pay out retirements.  Bottom line Defense needs to be cut since they have been on " emergency" supplementals for over 10 years.  History spells out what is not able to be accomplished in Afghanistan.  Pres Obama needs to relook his campaign promises and keep them.  Quit running for reelection and do the job...that will be the best indicator for the Voters.  He also needs to remember in his rhetoric that he voted against raising the national debt ceiling as a senator... work with republicans to create a balanced budget amendment.
Apr 18, 2011 12:25PM
What they show in these graphs is income tax collected.  What they never include are all the other fees and taxes collected, eg. gas taxes, federal sales taxes, licensing fees, etc.  I would like to see the total collections of the US.
Apr 18, 2011 12:21PM
Apr 18, 2011 1:11PM
The individuals that spent the money should be the ones that return the funds. That is how the rest of the world works.
Apr 18, 2011 12:52PM
Now I see that if we speak our opinion our post`s get`s deleted. What happened to freedom of speech?
Apr 18, 2011 11:03PM

The trust funds are "off-budget" and treated separately in certain ways from other Federal spending, and other trust funds of the Federal Government. From the U.S. Code:


EXCLUSION OF SOCIAL SECURITY FROM ALL BUDGETS Pub. L. 101-508, title XIII, Sec. 13301(a), Nov. 5, 1990, 104Stat. 1388-623, provided that: Notwithstanding any other provision of law, the receipts and disbursements of the Federal Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund and the Federal Disability Insurance Trust Fund shall not be counted as new budget authority, outlays, receipts, or deficit or surplus for purposes of - (1) the budget of the United States Government as submitted by the President, (2) the congressional budget, or (3) the Balanced Budget and Emergency Deficit Control Act of 1985.


The trust funds run surpluses in that the amount paid in by current workers is more than the amount paid out to current beneficiaries. These surpluses are given to the U.S. Treasury (and thus become part of the general federal budget) in exchange for special U.S. government securities, which are deposited into the trust funds. If the trust funds begin running deficits, meaning more in benefits are paid out than contributions paid in, the Social Security Administration is empowered to redeem the securities and use those funds to cover any deficit.


It is the surpluses that are given to the U. S. Treasury that are called "IOUs" by those who wish to mislead you.  Those "IOUs" are interest bearing government securities.  NOTE: Your bank loans the money from your bank account out, so I guess you could say that your personal bank account is filled with IOUs.  Social Security does INVEST in U. S. Treasury securities, just as some of U. S. Citizens invest in U. S. Savings Bonds securities.  Those Savings Bonds are interest bearing IOUs with mandatory repayment provisions.   IRA and 401K accounts invest your money.  Guess your funds are filled with "IOUs".  I wonder if those retirement investment accounts have mandatory repayment provisions?   



Apr 18, 2011 12:35PM
...Clearly all the domestic spending is where problem lies and most of the waste is sourced back to Govt. itself. Liberal policies are what is wrong with this picture. Am I saying get rid of these pregrams..depends..D​efense ? No ! But SocialSecurity,medic​are, medicade, aid to the poor all have enormous fraud & running cost problems built into them by design by liberal policies for the expressed purpose to buy votes elininate these fraud/perks & there's 20-30% savings right there. Cost for Govt. perks like seperate retirement,medical bennies & the like should be eliminated & merged into the same system that everyone else is enrolled exceptions !! This will never happen of course because Govt. will justify it's exsemption status based on who cares what they'll say cause it's THEIR government not yours (you're just the sheep, ****s !!) so untill there are Constitutionally minded people running your Govt. expect the debt ceiling to be raised every year till there is a worldwide "reset" or economic collapse & catastrophy...whatev​er you call it, it's the second burning of ROME !!
Apr 18, 2011 11:02AM
1.7% for international handouts still amounts to around 36 billion (That's allot of cheese) and the way it is administered is nuts. There is no picking and choosing who gets aid. It's all or nothing. That needs to change so we can stop sending to nations who want to kill us. SS should correct itself when the BBs start dying off. Defense is where we can reallocate billions if not trillions. But the real answer is not really in cuts. Revenue is the answer. The super rich pay less as a percentage of their income than the masses in the middle. That's where the money is. The Government needs the guts to go after it.
Apr 23, 2011 3:39PM

Only elitist Donkeys, who think some are more equal than others, believe it UNEQUAL is FAIR...


If you truely believe that in taxes, it should be that way with all things...  Discrimination should be legal...  using that logic...


Sorry, but our  government is spending (4.47 tillion budget / 308 million people) 14,500 per person or 57,000 per family of 4.   This MUST end.  This is why government continuesto grow so large.  There is no pain for half the population in paying taxes.  We have reached the point where those collecting can steal from those that have via voting.


We must end this Donkey party socialism and government run Ponzi  schemes.


I think we hould just start right now, and refuse to pass the debt ceiling increase.  It is perfectly fine to spend money on socialist, redistributionalist ideas, but the government should not be borrowing 35 cents out of every  dollar spent to do so...


This November either we fire another 3000+ Donkey Party people nationwide, or we prepareto file for bankruptcy and the chaos that  follows.   Gold/Silver are saying the Donkeyswant to continue on Spending.  Obama's budget says the samething...


Now on the subject of Obama's constant class warfare... Those in the 35% tac bracket pay 1.2 Trillion in taxes currently.  Upping the rate to 39.6% as Mr. Obama wants will generate all of 55.2 Billion in extra tax revenue.  The CBO's most recent budget deficit estimate is not 1.72 Trillion.  That means we would need to SLASH 1.6 Trillion or so to balance this years  budegt.  Mr. Obama can start anytime, but he is in campaign mode, not reality  mode...


In short Ryan's plan cuts 600 Billion, Obama's with  his jobs killing tax increase 450 Billion....  Any way you slice it we still need to slash another TRILLION...


Novermber 2012 cannot get here fast enough....

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